Friday, January 13, 2006

Love in a Time of Political Cholera

So it’s Restaurant Week in DC, a program that started after 9/11 when the restaurants around here were basically empty for weeks. It’s a great chance to check out places you’ve been thinking of trying without dropping too much cash. The restaurants that participate offer a three-course fixed-price lunch special for, this year, $20.06 (get it?) and three-course fixed-price dinners for $30.06.

Had a nice dinner earlier in the week at i Ricci, where we eat a lot anyway since it’s close to my office. Also had a great dinner last night at a new place called Willow, near where I live in Arlington. Willow is run by a former chef at Kinkead’s and the owner of the Firehook Bakeries, and has a fantastic Jugendstil interior, that any Arts & Crafts devotee would enjoy.

It’s not frivolous to talk about music and food in times like ours. It’s not frivolous to seduce our lovers, as Nikki Giovanni knew:


one day
you gonna walk in this house
and i'm gonna have a long African
you'll sit down and say "The Black..."
and i'm gonna take one arm out
then you-not noticing me at all- will say "What about this brother..."
and i'm going to be slipping it over my head
and you'll rap on about "The revolution..."
while i rest your hand against my stomach
you'll go on-as you always do- saying
"I just can't dig..."
while i'm moving your hand up and down
and i'll be taking your dashiki off
then you'll say "What we really need..."
and taking your shorts off
the you'll notice
your state of undress
and knowing you you'll just say
isn't this counterrevolutionary..."

In fact, music, food, great sex, things that bring us joy are more important than ever in this time of political cholera. This is going to be, as Peter Daou recently noted, a long, difficult slog. And, as Emma Goldman may or may not have remarked, if I can’t dance, I don’t want to be part of your revolution. I’m still thinking about thriving -- thriving while we overthrow the Bush junta, thriving in a post-Roe world, thriving while the planet all around us continues to sicken, thriving just to spite those who’d love to see us wither. Wallis Simpson was, I believe, onto something when she remarked that living well can be the best revenge.

What will you do this weekend to thrive?

Scorp Faery

My brilliant friend Amy Clarke is performing in NYC on the 17th.

Happy New Year and a Bright Full Moon! Thanks to all who came out to my December gig at PIANOS – I love you all for your support – it rocked.

Next week, I am playing a few songs (including new ones) at the lovely little KAVEHAZ on Tuesday January 17 at 8PM – the live music and jazz club in Chelsea.

Just me and a piano, sharing an hour set with Gary Hill, NO COVER, would love to see you there!

The CD is beginning to shape up – a few tracks are finished recording...will keep you posted as it develops further.

Thanks for listening, and wishing you a prosperous and fulfilling year!

AMY CLARKE – acoustic
37 W. 26th St, NYC

If you're in town, you MUST go hear her!

Thursday, January 12, 2006

I Love Me Some Miss Dorothy

Temps Perdu by Dorothy Parker

I never may turn the loop of a road
Where sudden, ahead, the sea is Iying,
But my heart drags down with an ancient load-
My heart, that a second before was flying.

I never behold the quivering rain-
And sweeter the rain than a lover to me-
But my heart is wild in my breast with pain;
My heart, that was tapping contentedly.

There's never a rose spreads new at my door
Nor a strange bird crosses the moon at night
But I know I have known its beauty before,
And a terrible sorrow along with the sight.

The look of a laurel tree birthed for May
Or a sycamore bared for a new November
Is as old and as sad as my furtherest day-
What is it, what is it, I almost remember?

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

And Me All Out of Stoli (aka Put on Your Big Girl Panties and Deal with It!)

Someone give this bitch something to cry about. How about a daughter found in a back alley who's bled to death from a botched abortion? No? No tears over that? OK. How about a son with his arms and legs blown off in George's excellent war that he lied America into before he anointed her lord and master to the Supreme Court? No? Not doing it for her? Can't get the waterworks going over that? OK. How about some poor slob thrown into Gitmo, tortured, and kept from consulting a lawyer or even being charged due Bush's "executive powers" which her Sammy wants to expand? NO? Really? Still can't get the tear ducts flowing? Wow.

OK, then let's go with what this really was. Karl Rove told her to just think about a kitty getting killed or a fetus being torn, ripped, grabbed untimely from its mother's womb. And she did it on cue. What a trooper. Hit her mark and exited stage left. Now if Karl would only spring for some decent costumes and some real jewelry.

Fucking skank.

Living in a Post-Roe World

So now that Roe v. Wade is dead -- or at least in Schiavo territory -- what are we women going to do? I'm past being able to be pregnant, but I have friends and loved one's who aren't so lucky.

I've been urging all the women I know who either have all the children they plan to have or who do not want children to get sterilized NOW. Because they're going to make that illegal in a few short years, as well. A vasectomy for your partner is less expensive and less invasive, but doesn't provide the woman with enough control, IMHO. You can still become pregnant due to rape and, Goddess forbid, you may want to change partners some day.

But we know that teenagers and young women will continue to experience unplanned pregnancies. In fact, with the ineffective "abstinence education" that has replaced sex education in much of this country, and with the increasing difficulty that many women experience (which will get worse as the fundies implement Phase II - No More Birth Control) when trying to obtain birth control (fuck you Target!) unplanned pregnancies are likely to increase.

We need to start thinking now about how we'll cope. Charities that fund travel to Canada for indigent women? An underground railroad to get pregnant women to Canada? Offshore hospital boats that anchor just outside of US coastal waters? I don't know. I just know that WE CAN'T GO BACK.

What are you willing to do? What risks would you take for yourself, your sister, a Goth teenager you don't know?

And, along with my meditations this year on the word "thrive" -- what can we do to help women not only survive but thirve in a post-Roe world? What would that look like? What would it mean for you, for your sister, for that Goth teenager?

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

I Was Afraid of This

I put off starting a blog for a long time because I was worried I wouldn't have time to "do it right." I honestly don't know how the folks who run big blogs do it -- it's a 24/7 occupation. And, for the last four or five days, my job has been keeping me too busy to write what I'd like to write here at Hecate.

To wit: I'd like to research and write a post about buying stock in Diebold and showing up at shareholder meetings arguing that management's practice of cooperating with Republicans and selling unverifiable voting machines is opening the company up to huge suits and legal repercussions.

My friend Elizabeth sent me a fascinating e-mail about Bush's statement that Arab tv misrepresents Americans and I've been meaning to do a post on that as well.

Hopefully, things will slow down later this week. But meanwhile, I'm thinking again about the role of fear in our lives. Fear of not being able to "do it right" often keeps me from starting new things. That can be good, but it has its downside, as well. How afraid of being over-committed are you?

Monday, January 09, 2006

Serene and Bright, and Lovely as a Lapland Night

One of my favorites:

William Wordsworth
Complete Poetical Works



Composed at the same time and on the same view as "I met Louisa in the shade": indeed they were designed to make one piece.

DEAR Child of Nature, let them rail!
--There is a nest in a green dale,
A harbour and a hold;
Where thou, a Wife and Friend, shalt see
Thy own heart-stirring days, and be
A light to young and old.

There, healthy as a shepherd boy,
And treading among flowers of joy
Which at no season fade,
Thou, while thy babes around thee cling,
Shalt show us how divine a thing
A Woman may be made.

Thy thoughts and feelings shall not die,
Nor leave thee, when grey hairs are nigh,
A melancholy slave;
But an old age serene and bright,
And lovely as a Lapland night,
Shall lead thee to thy grave.